Can a wife refuse her husband’s request for intercourse so that she could pray?
Fatwa No: 474031

  • Fatwa Date:13-4-2023 - Ramadan 23, 1444
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Asalam alaikoum. Is it bad that it was a call to Isha prayer, and my husband wanted to have intercourse. I told him that after we pray, it would be great to be intimate with him. However, he got upset, prayed with me, and then stayed mad about not having intercourse. When I went to try and have intercourse with him he was refusing me because I wanted to get the last prayer of the day done so that we could have our time. Was it wrong for me to want to pray first and then have our intimacy after the call of prayer?


All perfect praise be to Allah, The Lord of the Worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allah, and that Muhammad  sallallaahu  `alayhi  wa  sallam ( may  Allaah exalt his mention ) is His slave and Messenger.

There is nothing wrong with you wanting your husband to delay intercourse until you would perform the prayer. But if your husband insisted on his opinion, then you had to fulfil his request. Scholars have stated that if a husband calls his wife to bed, it is not permissible for her to refuse unless the intercourse would harm her or prevent her from performing a religious obligation. This is evidenced in the Hadeeth reported by Al-Bukhari and Muslim on the authority of Abu Hurayrah  may  Allaah  be  pleased  with  him who said: The Messenger of Allah, sallallaahu`alayhi wa sallam, said, “If a man calls his wife to his bed and she refuses, and thus he spends the night angry with her, the angels continue cursing her till the morning.” On the other hand, scholars have given permission for a man to be absent from the prayer in congregation if he longs for intercourse, and he did not fear running out of time (of the prayer), so they gave him the permission in that to take away his concerns and what distracts the reverence in prayer, just like praying in the presence of food and the like, which are prohibited according to the hadeeth of 'Aa’ishah  may  Allaah  be  pleased  with  her who said: “I heard the Messenger of Allah, sallallaahu`alayhi wa sallam, saying, “No Salat (prayer) should be performed when the food has been served, nor should it be performed when a person is in need of relieving himself.” [Muslim]

Moreover, the Messenger of Allah, sallallaahu`alayhi wa sallam, said, “When one of you is served with his supper and the time for prayer comes, he should first have his supper.” [Al-Bukhari and Muslim]

Allah knows best.

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